Happy New Year y'all! I hope everyone had a safe, fun and exciting New Year's Eve - we are in Palm Coast, FL with family enjoying the sunshine! Before we all jump on our new year resolutions and goals, I think it is important to reflect on the year that is now behind us.
2016 was such a big year and personally, one of my favorites. Kollin and I accomplished a lot, changed a lot and grew together. From a new apartment, four-year anniversary, engagements and weddings of loved ones, and personal triumphs, we had a lot going on!
Not to mention, the Cubs winning the World Series, new friendships, turning 23 and celebrating a full year at my full-time job. 2016 was definitely a growth year for us, and with growth always comes learning.
You are Not Your Age, You are What You Contribute
One of the best things I learned this year is that age is just a number. In professional environments, I am surrounded by people sometimes twice my age, whom have built impressive careers. I think it is really important to remember that your age should not determine what you contribute to something.
Another lesson from this year was how important saving is. Living in downtown Chicago, it can get expensive to have "everything you want." When looking for our new apartment and deciding what was a deal breaker, we had to be realistic. Of course, there are people who say, "You're young, don't worry about money!" but, nothing is more comforting than knowing you covered in the bank account area if something happens that you have no control over.
Celebrate Small Moments
This year has been a year of small moments (and big moments!), but what I loved most was cherishing the things that don't usually get celebrated. Whether it is landing a client, finishing studying for an exam, or just making it to Friday, cherishing the small moments help you appreciate the person you're sharing them with.
After working full-time for over a year now, I can see how many people go through the motions and get bored with what they are doing, either personally or professionally. Adopting an appreciation for the small things, makes life and your experiences more memorable.
If moving to a new city has taught me one thing, it is that you should embrace who you want to be. I know I've mentioned this on the blog before, but living in Chicago made me comfortable with myself in a way that I never was before. I dress the way I want and get to be completely myself. Growing up in KY, that can be difficult because you pretty much stay with the same 150 kids from elementary school on. Nothing makes you reflect on who you are and what you want more than a new city or environment.
It's not a bad year, it's a bad day(s)
I was sad to see that many people I follow on social media had a challenging year in 2016. There have definitely been some scary, concerning and even bad things happen this year. But nothing puts your life into perspective faster than realizing that there are people out there praying for what you may take for granted.
I love the mentality of the New Year that so many people hold: new year, new me, new goals, a fresh start. I think it is great to take a look back and want to improve yourself or learn something new in the coming year. I hope everyone has a great start to a great year - 2017 will be such a exciting one and I wish nothing but health and happiness for each of you! Thank you so much for supporting my little spot on the internet! xx